Branding brings to mind logos, images and the basic themes companies use to be easily identified in their market. That may have been the case 20 years ago, but business has evolved and the modern brand is so much more than your logo. It is the personality and attitude of your business.
The feeling that is conveyed by the story you tell your customers in order to build trust, ultimately resulting in a sale.
To build on the traditional brand and go beyond visual representation, you need to think about how you can use consumer trends, the interests (and pain points) of your audience, and modern technology to tell your story and create a memorable experience.
Don’t get locked into the how, or the channels you’ll use. It’s time to get creative.
Viral marketing, infectious marketing, call it what you will. It’s a way of communicating with your audience that resonates with them so much, they can’t help but share it. Humor, critical thinking, great tips and knowledge, helpful innovation and creative thinking, ideas, and proof of community participation are just a few types of content that can become infectious regardless of the platform you’re using.
Hidden within that information is the messaging that reinforces your brand. It’s subtle, but it will spread right along with your infectious marketing.
If you offer a solution to a customer’s issue, but it’s the most ideal solution for their specific issue, then point them to a competitor who can help. A Harvard behavioral scientist says a relationship with a brand is a lot like a romantic relationship. Straying is invigorating, but brings back feelings for a favored brand even stronger. That customer is far more likely to remember you, sing your praise, and spread the good word about how awesome your brand really is.
This kind of activity also speaks spades about your character; you care more about the customer than the sale.
Be Forward Thinking
Transform your branding approach to focus on maintain relationships with customers rather than just acquiring them. Your customers aren’t looking for a fling. Three-quarters of adults say they look for long-term commitment from the brands in their life, but they aren’t easily won over. Your branding should communicate the human side of your business, and that you’re there for them as often as they’ll need you to be.
According to the Association for Psychological Science in a recent book Human Brand, stereotypes exist everywhere. In fact, customers stereotype companies in the same way we stereotype people. That means pre-existing impressions and opinions are made before they even interact with your brand.
You can break out of that by being warm across every channel and platform when acting as your brand ambassador. People want a combination of warmth, compassion and competence from the people around us, and they appreciate it just the same when it comes from a brand. As they experience that warmth in your branding they’ll be more inclined to open up, come closer and establish a loyalty that is difficult to break.